c. 304 A.D.


 Preaching at a Council, Med. illum MS

The Following is adapted from: The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, ed. Cross, Livingstone; (OUP, 1983).

COUNCIL of ELVIRA A Spanish Council held at the beginning of the 4th cent., traditionally dated c.306, almost certainly at Granada. It passed 81 canons whose interest lies in the severe disciplinary penalties enforced for apostasy and adultery. It also required continence of all the clergy under pain of deposition (can. 33). Several of the canons order lifelong excommunication without reconciliation even at death.

Hardouin, 1 (1715), cols. 247–58; Mansi, 2 (1759), cols. 1–406. Crit. text in G. Martinez Diez, SJ, and F. Rodriguez, SJ (eds.), La Coleccion Canonica Hispana, 4 (1984), pp. 233–68. Hefele and Leclercq, 1 (1; 1907), pp. 212–64. A. W. W. Dale, The Synod of Elvira and Christian Life in the Fourth Century: A Historical Essay (1882). L. *Duchesne, ‘Le Concile d’Elvire et les Flamines chrétiens’, Mélanges Renier (1886), pp. 159–74; V. C. de Clercq, CICM, Ossius of Cordova (Washington, DC, 1953), esp. pp. 85–117. S. Laeuchli, Power and Sexuality: The Emergence of Canon Law at the Synod of Elvira (Philadelphia, 1972), with Eng. tr. of the canons, pp. 126–35. M. Meigne, ‘Concile ou Collection d’Elvire’, RHE 70 (1975), pp. 361–87. D. Ramos-Lissón in J. Orlandis and D. Ramos-Lissón, Die Synoden auf der Iberischen Halbinsel bis zum Einbruch des Islam (1981), pp. 3–30. J. Gaudemet in DHGE 15 (1963), cols. 317–48, s.v. ‘Elvire II. Le Concile d’Elvire’, with extensive bibl.

Hardouin J. Hardouin [Harduinus], Acta Conciliorum et Epistolae Decretales, ac Constitutiones Summorum Pontificum (12 vols., Paris, ‘1714–15’).

Mansi J. D. Mansi, Sacrorum Conciliorum Nova et Amplissima Collectio (31 vols., Florence, 1759–98).

Duchesne [see LP].

RHE Revue d’Histoire Ecclésiastique (Louvain, 1900 ff.).






DEINDE SEQUITUR CONCILIUM ELIBERRITANUM DECEM ET NOVEM EPISCOPORUM CONSTANTINI TEMPORIBUS GESTUM EODEM TEMPORE, QUO NICENA SYNODUS HABITA EST.  Cum <V, f. rb> convenissent sancti et religiosi episcopi in ecclesia Elibertina,  hoc est, Felix episcopus Aequitanus, Conscius episcopus Cordobensis, Savinus episcopus Spalensis, Camerinus episcopus Tacitanus, Sinagius episcopus Pegrensis, <O, f. vb> Secundusdinus episcopus Catalensis, Pardus episcopus Memtessanus, Flavianus episcopus Eliberritanus, Catonius episcopus Corsitanus, Liberius episcopus Meritensis, Valerius episcopus Caesaragustanus, Decentius episcopus Legionensis, Melantius episcopus Toletanus, Ianuarius episcopus de Fiblaria, Vincentius episcopus Ossonobensis, Quintianus episcopus Elborensis, Successus episcopus de Elicroca, Euticianus episcopus Bastitanus, Patricius episcopus Malacitanus, residentibus etiam triginta sex presbyteris adstantibus diaconibus et omni plebe episcopi universi dixerunt:





Those who sacrifice to idols after baptism

I. De his, qui post baptismum idolis immolant.<W, f. v>



1. IT is decided that anyone of a mature age who, after the saving faith of baptism, approaches a temple as an idolater and thus commits a capital crime, may not receive communion even at the approach of death.

I. Placuit, ut, quicumque post fidem baptismi salutaris adulta aetate ad templum idoli idolatriis accesserit <V, f. rb> et fecerit, quod est crimen principale, nec in finem eum ad communionem suscipere.





Pagan Priests who offer sacrifice after baptism

II. De sacerdotibus gentilium, qui post baptismum immolaverunt.



2. Temple-priests (flamines) who, after the faith of font and regeneration, have sacrificed, since they have thereby doubled their guilt by adding murder [by arranging public games], or even tripled it through sexual immorality, are not to receive communion even at the approach of death.

II <W, f. v> Flamines, qui post fidem lavacri et regenerationis sacrificaverint, eo quod geminaverint scelera accedente homicidio vel triplicaverint facinus cohaerente moechia, placuit eos nec in finem accipere communionem.





[Pagan Priests] who simply performed their function before idols

III. De hisdem, si idolis munus tantum dederint.



3. At the same time temple-priests (flamines)who have not actually sacrificed but simply performed their function may, since they have refrained from the deadly sacrifices, be offered communion at the approach of death if they have performed the required penance. However if they commit a sexual offense after the penance, it is decided they may no longer receive communion, lest they appear to make a mockery of the Sunday communion.

<W, f. v> III Item flamines, qui non immolaverunt, sed munus tantum dederunt, eo quod se a funestis abstinuerunt sacrificiis, placuit in finem eis praestare communionem, acta tamen legitima poenitentia. Item ipsi, si post poenitentiam fuerint moechati, placuit ulterius eis non esse dandam communionem, ne lusisse de dominica communione videatur.





When they, having not offered sacrifice while catechumens, may be baptized

IIII. De hisdem, si caticumini adhuc immolant, quando baptizarentur.



4. Again, temple-priests (flamines) who are catechumens and who have refrained from sacrifices shall be admitted after a period of three years.

IIII <V, f. va> Item flamines, si fuerint caticumini et se a sacrificiis abstinuerint, post triennii tempora placuit ad baptismum admitti debere.





A mistress who kills a maidservant in a frenzy

V. Si domina per zelum ancillam occiderit.



5. If a woman overcome with rage beats her maidservant so badly that she dies within three days, and it is doubtful whether she killed her on purpose or by accident: provided that the required penance has been done, she shall be readmitted after seven years, if it was done purposely, and after five years if accidentally; in the event that she becomes ill during the set time, she may receive communion.

V Si qua femina furore zeli accensa flagellis verberaverit ancillam suam, ita ut intra tertium diem animam cum cruciatu effundat, eo quod incertum sit, voluntate an casu occiderit, si voluntate, post septem annos, si casu, per quinque annorum tempora, acta legitima poenitentia ad communionem placuit admitti. Quod si infra tempora constituta fuerit infirmata, accipiat communionem.





One who kills another through sorcery

VI. Si quicumque per maleficia hominem interfecerit.<V, f. vb>



6. If anyone kills another by sorcery, communion is not to be given to him even at the approach of death, since he could not have accomplished this crime without commiting idolatry.

VI Si quis vero maleficio interficiat alterum, eo quod sine idolatria perficere scelus non potuit, nec in finem impertiendam esse illi communionem.





Those penitent after sexual sin who then sin again

VII. De poenitentibus moechiae si rursus peccaverint.



7. If one of the faithful, after a sexual offense and after the required period of penance, should again commit fornication, he may not receive communion even at the approach of death.

VII Si quis forte fidelis post lapsum moechiae post tempora constituta acta poenitentia denuo fuerit fornicatus, placuit eum nec in finem habere communionem.





Women who leave their husband to marry another

VIII. De feminis, quae relictis viris suis aliis nubunt.<V, f. vb>



8. Again, women who, without any preceding cause, leave their husbands and take up with other men are not to receive communion even at the approach of death.

VIII Item feminae, quae nulla praecedente causa reliquerint viros suos et alteris se copulaverint, nec in finem accipiant communionem.





Women who leave an adulterous spouse and marry another

VIIII. De feminis, qui adulteros maritos relinquunt et aliis nubunt.



9. Further a baptized woman who leaves her adulterous baptized husband and marries another is forbidden to marry him; if she does she shall not receive communion until the death of her former husband unless, by chance, the pressure of illness demand that it be given.

VIIII Item fidelis femina, quae adulterum maritum reliquerit fidelem et alterum ducit, prohibeatur ne ducat. Si autem duxerit, non prius accipiat communionem, quam is, quem relinquit, de saeculo exierit, nisi forte necessitas infirmitatis dare compulerit.





Catecheumens abandoned [by their spouses] or who abandon [their spouses]

X. De derelicta caticumini, si alterum duxerit.



10. If a woman who has been deserted by her catechumen husband marries another man, she may be admitted to the font of baptism; that also applies to female catechumens. But if the man who leaves the innocent woman marries a Christian woman, and this woman knew he had a wife whom he had left without cause, communion may be given to her at the approach of death.

X Si ea, quam caticuminus relinquit, duxerit maritum, potest ad fontem lavacri admitti. <V, f. vb> Hoc et circa feminas caticuminas erit observandum. Quod si fuerit, quae ducitur ab eo, qui uxorem inculpatam relinquit, et cum scierit illum ab uxore, quam sine causa relinquit, placuit in finem huiusmodi dare communionem.<W, f. r>






XI. De caticumina, si graviter aegrotaverit.



11. If that female catechumen should grow seriously ill during five year period, baptism is not to be denied her.

XI Intra quinquennii autem tempora caticumina, si graviter fuerit infirmata, addendum ei baptismum <V, f. va> placuit non denegari.






XII. De mulieribus, quae lenocinium fecerint.



12. Α mother or female guardian or any Christian woman who engages in pandering, since she is selling another's body—or even her own—she shall not receive communion even at the approach of death. ·

XII <O, f. ra> Mater vel parens vel quaelibet fidelis, si lenocinium exercuerit, eo quod alienum vendiderit corpus vel potius suum, placuit eam nec in fine accipere communionem.






XIII. De virginibus deo sacratis, si adulteraverint.



13. Virgins who have consecrated themselves to God, if they break their vow of virginity and turn to lust instead, not realizing what they lose, shall not be given communion at the approach of death. If, however, corrupted by the fall of their weak body only once, they do penance for the rest of their lives, and abstain from intercourse so that they only seem fallen, they may receive communion at the approach of death.

XIII Virgines, quae se deo dicaverunt, si pactum perdiderint virginitatis atque eidem libidini servierint non intellegentes, quod admiserint, placuit nec in fine dandam eis  esse communionem. Quod si semet persuaserint, quod infirmitate corporis lapsae fuerint, etiam tempore vitae suae huiusmodi feminae egerint poenitentiam et abstinuerint se a coitu, eo quod lapsae potius videantur, placuit eas in finem communionem accipere debere.






XIIII. De virginibus saecularibus, si moechaverint.



14. Virgins who have not preserved their virginity, if they marry those who violated them and keep them as husband, they must be reconciled without penance after a year since they have broken only the nuptials. If, however, they have been intimate with other men—becoming guilty of real sexual offense—they ought to be admitted to communion only after five years, having fulfilled the required penance.

XIIII Virgines, quae virginitatem suam non custodierint, si eosdem, qui eas violaverint, duxerint et tenuerint maritos, eo quod solas nuptias violaverint, post annum sine poenitentia reconciliari debebunt, vel si alios cognoverint viros, eo quod moechatae sint, placuit per quinquennii tempora acta legitima poenitentia admitti eas ad communionem.






XV. De coniugio eorum, qui ex gentilitate veniunt.



Can 15. Nο matter the large number of girls, Christian maidens are by no means to be given in matrimony to pagans lest youth, bursting forth in bloom, end in adultery of the soul.

XV Propter copiam puellarum gentilibus minime in matrimonium dandae sunt virgines christianae, ne aetas in flore tumens in adulterio animae resolvatur.






XVI. De puellis fidelibus, ne infidelibus coniungantur.



16. Heretics, if they are unwilling to change over to the Catholic church, are not to have Catholic girls given to them in marriage, nor shall they be given to Jews or heretics, since there can be no community for the faithful with the unfaithful. If parents act against this prohibition, they shall be kept out for five years.

XVI Hereticis , qui errant ab ecclesia catholica, nec ipsis catholicas esse dandas puellas, sed neque Iudaeis neque hereticis dare placuit, eo <V, f. ra> quod nulla possit esse societas fideli cum infidele. Si contra interdictum fecerint parentes, abstinere per quinquennium placet.






XVII. De eis, qui filias suas sacerdotibus gentilium coniungunt.



17. If any should perchance join their daughters in marriage to priests of the idols, they shall not be given communion even at the approach of death.

XVII Si quis forte sacerdotibus idolorum filias suas iunxerint, placuit nec in finem eis dandam esse communionem.






XVIII. De sacerdotibus et ministris, si moechaverint.



18. Bishops, presbyters, and deacons, if—once placed in the ministry—they are discovered to be sexual offenders, shall not receive communion, not even at the approach of death, because of the scandal and the heinousness of the crime.

XVIII Episcopi, presbyteri, diacones, si in ministerio positi detecti fuerint, quod sint moechati, placuit et propter scandalum et propter infandum crimen nec in finem eos communionem accipere debere.






XVIIII. De clericis negotia et nundinas sectantibus.



19. Bishops, presbyters, and deacons are not to abandon their territories for commercial reasons, nor shall they run around the provinces seeking after profitable business, in order to procure their livelihood, let them rather send a son or freedman, an employee, a friend, or whomever they want; if they want to pursue business, let them do it within their own province.

XVIIII Episcopi, presbyteri  et diaconi de locis suis negotiandi causa non discedant, nec circumeuntes provincias quaestuosas nundinas sectentur. Sane ad victum <W, f. v> sibi conquirendum aut filium aut libertum aut mercenarium aut amicum aut quemlibet mittant et, si voluerint negotiari, intra provinciam negotientur.






XX. De clericis et laicis usurariis.



20. If anyone of the clergy has been discovered practicing usury, he shall be degraded and kept away. If a layman, too is shown to have practiced usury and, after having been accused, promises to stop and no longer to exact interest, he shall be granted pardon; if, however, he should persist in this wickedness, he is to be cast out of the church.

XX Si quis clericorum deditus fuerit usuras accipere, placuit degradari et abstineri. Si quis etiam laicus accepisse probatur usuras et promiserit correptus iam <V, f. vb> cessaturum nec ulterius exacturum, placet ei veniam tribui. Si vero in ea iniquitate duraverit, ab ecclesia sciat se esse proiciendum.






XXI. De his, qui tardius ad ecclesiam accedunt.



21. I anyone living in the city does not go to church for three Sundays, he shall be kept out for a short time in order that his punishment be made public.

XXI Si quis in civitate positus tres dominicas ad ecclesiam non accesserit, pauco tempore abstineatur, ut correptus esse videatur.






XXII. De catholicis in heresim transeuntibus, si revertuntur.



22. If anyone goes over from the Catholic church to heresy and returns again, penance shall not be denied to him since he has recognized his sin. He shall do penance for ten years, and after these ten years, communion shall be offered to him. If however they have been led astray as little children, it is not their fault they have sinned; [and] they should certainly be accepted back.

XXII Si quis de catholica ecclesia ad heresim transitum fecerit rursusque ad ecclesiam recurrerit, placuit huic poenitentiam non esse denegandam, eo quod cognoverit peccatum suum. Qui etiam decem annis agat poenitentiam, cui post decem annis praestari communio debet. Si vero infantes fuerint transducti, quod non suo vitio peccaverunt, incunctanter recipi debeant.






XXIII. De temporibus ieiuniorum.



23. The extensions of the fast shall be celebrated through each month—except for the days of the two months of July and August, because of some people's weakness.

XXIII Ieiunii superpositiones per singulos menses placuit celebrari exceptis diebus duorum mensium Iulio et Augusto ob eorundem infirmitatem.






XXIIII. De his, qui in peregre baptizantur, ut ad clerum non veniant.<O, f. va>



24. All those who have been baptized while on a journey [i,e, away from home], since their life has scarcely been examined, shall not be promoted to the clergy in foreign provinces.

XXIIII Omnes , qui in peregre fuerint baptizati, eo quod eorum minime sit cognita vita, placuit ad clerum non esse promovendos <V, f. rb> in alienis provinciis.






XXV. De epistolis communicatoribus confessorum.



25. Those who have letters of recommendation describing them as “confessors” should obtain new letters describing them instead as “communicants”. Simple people are deceived by the honorable title of “confessor.”

XXV Omnis, qui attulerit litteras confessorias sublato nomine confessoris, eo quod omnes sub hac nominis gloria partim concutiant simplices, communicatoriae ei dandae sunt litterae.






XXVI. De hoc, ut omni sabbato ieiunetur.



26. In order to correct the erroneous practice, it is decided that we must celebrate the rigorous fast every Saturday.

XXVI Errorem placuit corrigi, ut omni sabbati die superpositionem celebremus.






XXVII. De clericis, ut extraneam mulierem in domo non habeant.



27. A bishop or any other clergy may have living with him only a sister or a virgin daughter dedicated to God; by no means shall he keep any woman unrelated to him.

XXVII Episcopus vel quilibet alius clericus aut sororem aut filiam virginem dicatam deo tantum secum habeat, extraneam vero nequaquam habere placuit.






XXVIII. De oblationibus eorum, qui non communicant.



28. A bishop shall not take a gift from one who is not in communion.

XXVIII. Episcopum placuit ab eo, qui non communicat, munera accipere non debere.






XXVIIII. De inerguminis, qualiter habeantur in ecclesia.



29. A possessed man who is tormented by an erratic spirit shall not have his name read out at the altar with the offering; nor shall he be permitted to serve personally in the church.

XXVIIII Inerguminum, qui ab erratico spiritu exagitatur, huius nomen neque ad altare cum oblatione esse recitandum, <O, f. rb> neque permittendum, ut sua manu <W, f. r> in ecclesia ministret.






XXX. De his, qui post lavacrum moechaverint, ut nec subdiacones fiant.



30. Those who in their youth have sinned sexually are not to be ordained subdeacons inasmuch as they might afterwards be promoted by deception to a higher order. Furthermore, if any have been ordained in the past, they are to be removed.

XXX Subdiaconem eum ordinari non debere, qui in adolescentia sua fuerit moechatus, eo quod postmodum per subreptionem ad altiorem gradum non sit promovendus. Si autem aliqui sunt in praeteritum ordinati, amoveantur.





Adolescents guilty of sexual immorality after baptism

XXXI. De adolescentibus, qui post lavacrum moechati sunt.



31. Young men who after the faith of saving baptism have committed sexual offense shall be admitted to communion when they marry, provided the required penance is done.

XXXI Adolescentes, qui post fidem lavacri salutaris fuerint moechati, cum duxerint uxores, acta legitima poenitentia placuit ad communionem eos admitti.






XXXII. De excommunicatis presbyteris, ut in necessitate communionem dent.



32. If anyone, through grave sin, has fallen into fatal ruin, he shall not do penance before a presbyter but rather before the bishop; however, under the pressure of illness it is necessary that a presbyter shall offer communion, and even a deacon if a priest orders him.

XXXII Si quis gravi lapsu in ruinam mortis inciderit, placuit agere poenitentiam non debere sine episcopi consultu, sed potius apud episcopum agat, cogente tamen infirmitate nec est presbyterorum aut diaconorum communionem talibus praestare debere, nisi eis iusserit episcopus.





Bishops and ministers to abstain from [relations with] their wives

XXXIII. De episcopis et ministris, ut ab uxoribus abstineant.



33. BISHOPS, presbyters, as well as deacons and  subdeacons having a position in the ministry are ordered to abstain completely from [conjugal relations with] their wives and not to have children. Whoever, in fact, does this, shall be expelled from the dignity of the clerical state.

XXXIII lJlacuit in totum prohibere episcopis, presbyteris et diaconibus ac subdiaconibus positis in ministerio abstinere se a coniugibus <V, f. ra> suis et non generare filios. Quod quicumque fecerit, ab honore clericatus exterminetur.






XXXIIII. Ne cerei in cimiteriis incendantur.



34. Candles shall not be burned in a cemetery during day, for the spirits of the saints are not to be disturbed. Those who do not observe this are excluded from the communion of the church.

XXXIIII Cereos per diem placuit in cimiterio non incendi, inquietandi enim sanctorum spiritus non sunt. Qui haec non  observaverint, arceantur ab ecclesiae communione.






XXXV. Ne feminae in cimiteriis pervigilent.



35. Women are forbidden to spend the night in a cemetery since often under the pretext of prayer they secretly commit evil deeds.

XXXV Placuit prohiberi, ne feminae in cimiterio pervigilent, eo quod saepe sub obtentu orationis latenter scelera committant.






XXXVI. Ne picturae in ecclesia fiant.



36. There shall be no pictures in churches, lest what is worshipped and adored be depicted on walls.

XXXVI <V, f. va> Placuit picturas in ecclesia esse non debere nec, quod colitur aut adoratur, in parietibus depingatur.






XXXVII. De inerguminis non baptizatis.



37. Those who are tormented by unclean spirits, if they have reached the point of death, shall be baptized; if they are already baptized, communion shall be given them. Furthermore, these people are forbidden to light candles publicly. If they want to act against the prohibition, they shall be kept away from communion.

XXXVII Eos, qui ab immundis spiritibus vexantur, si in fine mortis fuerint constituti, baptizari placet. Si vero fideles fuerint, dandam eis esse communionem. Prohibendum etiam, ne lucernas publice accendant. Si facere contra interdictum voluerint, abstineantur a communione.





That in [urgent] necessity the faithful may baptize

XXXVIII. Ut in necessitate et fideles baptizent.



38. On the occasion of a trip or if a church is not near, a baptized Christian who has kept his baptism intact and who is not marred a second time can baptize a catechumen who is critically ill, as long as he takes him to the bishop if he survives, so that it can be completed through the laying on of hands.

XXXVIII Peregre navigantes aut, si ecclesia in proximo non fuerit, posse fidelem, qui lavacrum suum integrum habet nec sit bigamus, baptizare in necessitate infirmitatis positum caticuminum, ita ut, si supervixerit, ad episcopum eum perducat, ut per manus impositionem perfici possit.






XXXVIIII. De gentilibus, si in discrimine baptizari expetunt.



39. Pagans, if in sickness they wish to have the laying on of hands, and if their life has been at least partially decent, shall have the laying on of hands and become Christians.

XXXVIIII Gentiles, si in infirmitate desideraverint sibi manus imponi, si fuerit eorum ex aliqua <W, f. v> parte honesta vita, placuit eis manum imponi et fieri christianos.






XL. Ne  de hoc, quod idolotitum est, fideles accipiant.



40. It is forbidden that landholders, when they receive their payments, shall account as received anything offered to idols. If after this prohibition they do so anyway, they shall be severed from communion for the space of five years.

XL Prohibere placuit, ut, cum rationes suas accipiunt possessores, quicquid ad idolum datum fuerit, acceptum non ferant. Si vero post interdictum fecerint, per quinquennii spatia temporis a communione esse arcendos.






XLI. Ut prohibeant domini idola colere servis.



41. The faithful are warned to forbid, as far as they can, that idols be kept in their homes. If, however, they fear violence from their slaves, they must at least keep themselves pure. If they do not do this, they are to be considered outside the church.

XLI Admonere placuit fideles, ut, quantum possunt, prohibeant, ne idola in domibus suis habeant, si vero vim metuunt servorum, vel seipsos puros conservent. Si non fecerint, alieni ab ecclesia habeantur.






XLII. De his, qui ad fidem veniunt, quando baptizentur.



42. Those who arrive at the first stage of faith, if their reputation has been good, shall be admitted to the grace of baptism in two years, unless under the pressure of illness reason compels help more rapidly for the one approaching death or at least the one begging for grace.

XLII Eos, qui ad primam fidem credulitatis accedunt, si bonae fuerint conversationis, intra biennium temporis placuit ad baptismi gratiam admitti debere, nisi infirmitate compellente <O, f. va> coegerit ratio vel socio subvenire periclitanti vel gratiam postulanti.






XLIII. De celebratione pentecosten.



43. The perverted custom shall be changed in accordance with the authority of the scriptures, so that we all celebrate the day of Pentecost, lest anyone who does not conform be regarded as having introduced a new heresy.

XLIII Parvam institutionem emendari placuit iuxta auctoritatem scripturarum, ut cuncti diem pentecostes celebremus, quod, qui non fecerit, quasi novam heresem induxisse notetur.






XLIIII. De meretricibus paganis, si convertantur.>V, f. ra>



44. A prostitute who once lives as such and later married, if afterwards she has come to belief shall be received without delay.

XLIIII Meretrix, quae aliquando fuerit, et postea habuerit maritum, si postmodum ad credulitatem venerit, incunctanter placuit esse recipiendam.






XLV. De caticuminis, qui ecclesiam non frequentant.



45. As for one who was a catechumen and for a long time did not go to church at all, if one of the clergy acknowledged him to be a Christian, or if some of the faithful come forward as witnesses, baptism shall not be denied him since he appears to have cast off the old man.

XLV Qui aliquando fuerit caticuminus et per infinita tempora numquam ad ecclesiam accesserit, si eum de clero <V, f. rb> quisquam agnoverit voluisse esse christianum aut testes aliqui exstiterint fideles, placuit ei baptismum non negari, eo quod in vetere homine deliquisse videatur.






XLVI. De fidelibus, si apostataverint, quamdiu poeniteant.



46. If one of the faithful, having forsaken his religion, has not come to church for a long time but should then return, as long as he has not been an idolater, he shall receive communion after ten years.

XLVI Si quis fidelis apostata per infinita tempora ad ecclesiam non accesserit, si tamen aliquando fuerit reversus nec fuerit <V, f. vb> idolator, post decem annos placuit eum  communionem accipere.






XLVII. De eo, qui uxorem habet, si saepius moechatur.



Can 47. If a baptized married man commits adultery, not once but often, he is to be approached at the hour of death. If he promises to stop, communion shall be given him, if he should recover and commit adultery again, he shall nevermore make a mockery of the communion of peace.

XLVII Si quis fidelis habens uxorem non semel, sed saepe fuerit moechatus, in finem mortis est conveniendus. Quod si se promiserit cessaturum, detur ei communio. Si resuscitatus rursus fuerit moechatus, placuit ulterius non ludere eum de communione pacis.






XLVIII. De baptizandis, ut nihil accipiant clerici.



48. The custom of placing coins in the baptismal shell by those being baptized must be corrected so that the priest does not seem to sell for money what he has received freely. Nor shall their feet be washed by priests or clerics.

XLVIII Emendari placuit, ut hi, qui baptizantur, ut fieri solebat, nummos in concam non mittant, ne sacerdos, quod gratis accepit, pretio distrahere videatur, neque pedes eorum lavandi sunt a sacerdotibus vel clericis.






XLVIIII. De frugibus fidelium, ne a Iudaeis benedicantur.



49. Landholders are warned not to allow the crops, which they have received from God with an act of thanksgiving, to be blessed by Jews lest they make our blessing ineffectual and weak. If anyone dares to do this after the prohibition, he shall be thrown out of the church completely.

XLVIIII Admonere placuit possessores, ut non patiantur <W, f. r> fructus suos, quos a deo percipiunt, cum gratiarum actione a Iudaeis benedici, ne nostram irritam et infirmam faciant benedictionem. Si quis post interdictum facere usurpaverit, penitus ab ecclesia abiciatur.






L. De christianis, qui cum Iudaeis vescuntur.



50. If any of the clergy or the faithful eats with Jews, he shall be kept from communion in order that he be corrected as he should.

L Si vero aliquis clericus sive fidelis fuerit, qui cum Iudaeis cibum sumpserit, placuit eum a communione abstineri, ut debeat emendari.






LI. De hereticis, ut a clero non promoveantur.<V, f. ra>

51. If a baptized person has come from any heresy, by no means is he to be promoted to the clergy; if any have been ordained in the past, they shall be deposed without any question.

LI Ex omni heresi, si qui ad nos fidelis venerit, minime est ad clerum promovendus vel, si qui sunt in praeteritum ordinati, sine dubio deponantur.






LII. De his, qui in ecclesia libellos <W, f. r> famosos ponunt.



52. Those who have been caught placing derogatory writings in church shall be anathematized.

LII Hi, qui inventi fuerint libellos famosos in ecclesia ponere, anathematizentur.






LIII. De episcopis, qui excommunicato alieno communicant.



53. It is agreed by all that a person is to receive communion from that bishop by whom he was denied it for a particular crime. If another bishop presumes to admit him without the participation or consent of the bishop by whom he was deprived of communion, let him know that in this way he is going to create cause for dissent among the brethren and bring danger to his own position.

LIII Placuit cunctis, ut ab eo episcopo quis recipiat communionem, a quo abstentus in crimine aliquo quis fuerit. Quod si alius episcopus praesumpserit eum admitti illo adhuc minime faciente vel consentiente, a quo fuerat communione privatus, sciat se huiusmodi causas inter fratres esse cum status sui periculo praestaturum.






LIIII. De parentibus, qui fidem sponsaliorum frangunt.



54. If parents break the betrothal agreement, they shall be kept away for three years. But if either the groom or the bride has been caught in a serious crime, the parents are excused. If, however, the sin was mutual and the betrothed have defiled each other, the former penalty holds.

LIIII Si qui parentes fidem fregerint sponsaliorum, triennii tempore abstineant se a communione. Si tamen idem sponsus vel sponsa in gravi crimine fuerint depraehensi, excusati erunt parentes. Si vero in eodem fuerit vitio et polluerunt se consentiendo, superior sententia servetur.






LV. De sacerdotibus gentilium, qui iam non sacrificant.



55. Priests who simply wear the wreath and who neither sacrifice nor offer any of their income to idols shall receive communion after two years.

LV Sacerdotes , qui tantum coronam sacrificantes portant nec sacrificant nec de suis sumptibus aliquid idolis praestant, placuit post biennium accipere communionem.






LVI. De magistratibus et dominantibus.



56. Α magistrate is ordered to keep away from the church during the one year of his term as duumvir.

LVI <V, f. va> Magistratus vero anno, quo agit duumviratum, prohibendum placet, ut se ab ecclesia cohibeat.






LVII                 De his, qui vestimenta ad ornandam pompam dederint.



57. Matrons or their husbands are not to lend their finery to enhance a procession in a worldly fashion, and if they do so, they are to be kept away for three years.

LVII Matronae vel earum mariti vestimenta sua ad ornandum saeculariter pompam non dent, <O, f. vb> et si fecerint, triennii tempore abstineantur.<V, f. ra>

Canon 58

LVIII. De his, qui communicatorias litteras portant, ut de fide interrogentur.








58. where the principal Episcopal chair has been established, those who present letters of communion shall be interrogated to determine whether everything is verified by their testimony.

LVIII Placuit  ubicumque et maxime in eo loco, in quo primae cathedrae constitutus est episcopus, ut interrogentur hi, qui communicatorias litteras tradunt, an omnia recta habeant et suo testimonio comprobent.





The faithful may not ascent the capitol during sacrifice

LVIIII. De fidelibus, ne ad capitolium causa sacrificandi ascendant.



59. It is forbidden for any Christian to go up to the idol of the capitol, as a pagan does in order to sacrifice, and watch. If he does, he is guilty of the same crime. If he was baptized, he may be received, having completed his penance, after ten years.

LVIIII Prohibendum, ne quis christianus aut gentilis ad idolum capitolii causa sacrificandi ascendat et videat. Quod si fecerit, pari crimine teneatur. Si fuerit fidelis, post decem annos acta poenitentia recipiatur.





Those executed for destroying idols

LX. De his, qui destruentes idola occiduntur.



60. If someone has smashed idols and has been condemned to death for doing so; since this is not written in the Gospel nor is it found ever to have been done by the apostles, he shall not be included in the ranks of the martyrs.

LX Si quis idola fregerit et ibidem fuerit occisus, quia in evangelio scriptum non est neque invenietur sub apostolis umquam factum, placuit in numerum eum non recipi martyrum.<W, f. v>





One who has intercourse with two sisters

LXI. De his, qui duabus sororibus copulantur.



61. If a man after the death of his wife marries her sister and she was baptized, he shall be kept away from communion for five years, unless perchance the pressure of illness demands that peace be given more quickly.

LXI Si quis post obitum uxoris suae sororem eius duxerit et ipsa sit fidelis, quinquennio a communione placuit abstineri, nisi forte velocius dari pacem necessitas coegerit infirmitatis.





If a charioteer or pantomime converts

LXII. De aurigis et pantomimis, si convertantur.



62. If a charioteer or pantomime wants to believe, they shall first renounce their professions and only then be accepted on the condition that they do not later return to their former professions; if they attempt to violate this decision, they shall be expelled from the church.

LXII Si auriga aut pantomimus credere voluerint, placuit, ut prius artibus suis renuntient et tunc demum suscipiantur, ita ut ulterius non revertantur. Qui, si facere contra interdictum temptaverit, proiciantur ab ecclesia.





The wife who kills the child of her adultery

LXIII. De uxoribus, quae filios de adulterio necant.



63. If a woman, while her husband is away, conceives by adultery and after that crime commits abortion, she shall not be given communion even at the approach of death, since she has doubled her crime.

LXIII Si qua mulier per adulterium absente marito conceperit idque post facinus occiderit, placuit ei nec in finem dandam esse communionem, eo quod geminaverit scelus.





Women who remain in adultery with another man until his death

LXIII. De feminis, quae usque ad mortem cum alienis viris adulterant.



64. If a woman, remains in adultery with another man up to the end of her life, she shall not be give communion even at the approach of death. But if she should leave him, she may receive communion after ten years, having completed the required penance.

LXIIII Si qua mulier usque in finem mortis suae cum alieno viro fuerit mulier moechata, placuit nec in finem dandam ei esse communionem. Si vero eam reliquerit, post decem annos recipi ad communionem acta legitima poenitentia.





The adulterous wife of a cleric

LXV. De adulteris uxoribus clericorum.



65. If the wife of a cleric has committed adultery, and her husband knew of it but did not immediately throw her out, he shall not receive communion even at the approach of death, lest it appear as though instruction in crime is coming from those who should be the model of a good life.

LXV. Si cuius clerici uxor fuerit moechata et sciat eam maritus suus moechari et eam non statim proiecerit, nec in finem accipiat communionem, ne ab his, qui exemplum bonae conversationis esse debent, videantur scelerum magisteria procedere.





A man who marries his stepdaughter

LXVI. De his, qui privignas suas ducunt.



66. If a man marries his stepdaughter, inasmuch as he is incestuous, he shall not be given communion even at the approach of death.

LXVI Si quis privignam suam duxerit uxorem, eo quod sit incestus, placuit nec in finem dandam esse communionem.





Married women-cactechumen

LXVII. De coniugio caticuminae feminae.



67. It is forbidden for a woman, whether baptized or a catechumen, to have anything to do with comedians or actors; any who do this shall be kept from communion.

LXVII Prohibendum, ne qua fidelis vel caticumina aut comicos aut viros scenicos habeant. Quaecumque hoc fecerit, a communione arceatur.





An adulterous catechumen who kills her child

LXVIII. De caticumina adultera, quae filium necat.



68. A catechumen, if she has conceived a child in adultery and then suffocated it, shall be baptized at the approach of death.

LXVIII Caticumina, si per adulterium conceperit, et conceptum <V, f. vb> necaverit, placuit eam in fine baptizari.





Married men who fall into adultery

LXVIIII. De viris coniugatis postea in adulterio lapsis.



69. If a married man happens to fall once, he shall do penance for a period of five years and thus be reconciled, unless the necessity of illness requires communion to be given before that time; this is also binding for women.

LXVIIII Si quis forte habens uxorem semel fuerit lapsus, placuit eum quinquennium agere debere de ea re poenitentiam et sic reconciliari, nisi necessitas infirmitatis coegerit ante tempus dare communionem, hoc et circa feminas observandum.





Women who commit adultery with their husband's knowledge

LXX. De feminis, quae consciis maritis adulterant.



70. If a wife, with her husband's knowledge, has committed adultery, he shall not be given communion even at the approach of death; but if he gets rid of her, he may receive communion after ten years, if he kept her in his home for any length of time once he knew of the adultery.

LXX Si conscio marito uxor fuerit moechata, placuit nec in fine <V, f. rb> dandam ei esse communionem. Si vero eam reliquerit, post decem annos accipiat communionem, si eam, cum scierit adulteram, aliquo tempore in domo sua retinuit.





Men who sexually abuse boys

LXXI. De stupratoribus puerorum.



71. Men who sexually abuse boys shall not be given communion even at the approach of death.

LXXI Stupratoribus puerorum nec in finem dandam esse communionem.





Fornicating widows who later marry their partner

LXXII. De viduis moechis, si eundem postea maritum duxerint.



72. If a widow has intercourse with a man and later marries him, she shall be reconciled to communion after a period of five years, having completed the required penance; if she marries another man, having left the first, she shall not be given communion even at the approach of death; however, if the man she marries is one of the faithful, she shall not receive communion except after ten years, having completed the required penance, unless illness compels that communion be given more quickly.

LXXII Si qua vidua fuerit moechata et eundem postea habuerit maritum, post quinquennii tempus acta legitima poenitentia placuit eam communionem reconciliari. <W, f. v> Si alium duxerit relicto illo, nec in fine dandam ei esse communionem, vel si fuerit ille fidelis, quem accepit, communionem non accipiat, nisi post decem annos acta legitima poenitentia, nisi infirmitas coegerit, velocius dare communionem.






LXXIII. De dilatoribus.



73. An informer, if he was baptized and through his denunciation some one was proscribed or killed, shall not receive communion even at the approach of death; if it was a lesser case, he can receive communion within five years. If the informer was a catechumen, he may be admitted to baptism after a period of five years.

LXXIII Delator, si quis exstiterit fidelis et per delationem eius aliquis fuerit praescriptus vel interfectus, placuit eum nec in fine accipere communionem. Si levior causa fuerit, intra quinquennium accipere poterit communionem. Si caticuminus fuerit, post quinquennii tempora admittatur ad baptismum.





False Testimony

LXXIIII. De falsis testibus.



74. A false witness since he has committed a crime shall be excluded; but if his actions did not lead to death and he has explained satisfactorily why he remained silent [concerning his perjury], he shall be excluded for two years; however, if he cannot prove this to the assembly of the clergy, he shall be excluded for five years.

LXXIIII Falsus testis, prout crimen est, abstinebitur. Si tamen non fuerit mortis, quod obiecit, et probaverit, quod diu tacuerit, biennii tempore abstinebitur. Si autem non probaverit, conventu clericorum placuit per quinquennium abstineri.





No probation for those who accuse priests

LXXV. De his, qui sacerdotes accusant nec probant.



75. If anyone attacks a bishop, presbyter, or deacon by accusing them of false crimes, and he is unable to prove them, communion shall not be given him even at the approach of death.

LXXV Si quis autem episcopum vel presbyterum vel diaconum falsis criminibus appetierit et probare non potuerit, nec in finem dandam ei esse communionem.





Probation of Deacons who sinned before orders

LXXVI. De diaconibus, si ante honorem peccasse probentur.



76. If someone allows himself to be ordained deacon, and afterwards is discovered in a mortal crime, which he had committed at one time; if he confessed on his own, he shall receive communion after three years, having completed the required penance; but if someone else exposes him, he shall receive lay communion after five years, have done his penance.

LXXVI. Si quis diaconum se permiserit ordinari et postea fuerit detectus in crimine mortis, <O, f. ra> quod aliquando commiserit, si sponte fuerit confessus, placuit eum acta legitima poenitentia post triennium accipere communionem. Quod si alius eum detexerit, post quinquennium acta poenitentia accipere communionem laicam debere.





The baptized who die before Confirmation

LXXVII. De baptizatis, qui nondum confirmati moriuntur.



77. If a deacon in charge of common people with no bishop or presbyter baptizes some of them, the bishop shall perfect them by his blessing; but if they leave this world before that, a man can be regarded as justified depending on the faith by which he believed.

LXXVII. Si quis diaconus regens plebem sine episcopo vel presbytero aliquos baptizaverit, episcopus eos per benedictionem perficere debebit. Quod si ante de saeculo recesserit, sub fide, qua quis credidit, poterit esse iustus.





The married faithful who commit adultery with a Jew or pagan

LXXVIII. De fidelibus coniugatis, si cum Iudaea vel gentili moechaverint.



78. If one of the faithful who is married commits adultery with a Jewish or a pagan woman, he shall be cut off from communion, but if some one else exposes him, he can share Sunday communion after five years, having completed the required penance.

LXXVIII. Si quis fidelis habens uxorem cum Iudaea vel gentile fuerit moechatus, a communione arceatur. Quod si alius <V, f. r> eum detexerit, post quinquennium acta legitima poenitentia poterit dominicae sociari communioni.





Those who play dice

LXXVIIII. De his, qui tabula ludunt.



79. If one of the faithful plays dice, that is, on a playing board, for money, he shall be kept away; if, having reformed, he stops, he may be reconciled to communion after a year.

LXXVIIII Si quis fidelis alea, id est tabula, luserit, placuit eum abstineri, et si emendatus cessaverit, post annum poterit communioni reconciliari.






LXXX. De libertis.



80. It is forbidden for freedmen whose former masters are still alive to be promoted to the clergy.

LXXX Prohibendum, ut liberti, quorum patroni in saeculo fuerint, <V, f. va> ad clerum non prohibeantur.





Women's Letters

LXXXI. De feminarum epistolis.



81. Without their husbands signatures women shall not presume to write on their own to laywomen who are baptized, nor shall they accept anyone's letters of peace addressed only to themselves.

LXXXI Ne feminae suo potius absque maritorum nominibus laicis scribere audeant, qui fideles sunt, vel litteras alicuius pacificas ad suum solum nomen scriptas accipiant.













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